Friday, October 28, 2011

Garlic Parmesan Pull-apart bread

Any bread is my weakness but this stuff was amazing! The best part was how easy it was. Honestly besides rising it was maybe 10 minutes total. It stayed moist, tender, warm and it can be different every time which is soo much fun! I made my balls bigger than the recipe called for and they were great. (I did it because I was in a hurry and didn't have time to do loads of little balls, either way works). 
My one yr. old ate almost as many of these things as I did and they were just as tasty the next day with left-over soup!
I served this with Pork Chops Agrodolce and a Ceasar Salad and it was one of our favorite meals we have ever had! The pork chops are coming soon and are worth EVERY BITE!!!!!

I originally found this recipe on pinterest (my latest obsession) but through it was led to the cutest blog, The Pastry Affair. It is darling and the author has some GREAT ideas! Here is the link, thanks pastry affair!

Yields 1 loaf
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 1/3 cups barely warm water
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose (or bread) flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

In a large mixing bowl, stir together the yeast and water. Let sit 5 minutes until yeast is foamy. Mix in the olive oil, salt, and flour. If you have a stand mixer, attach the dough hook and knead the dough for 5-6 minutes, or until elastic. If you are doing this by hand, knead the dough on a lightly floured surface until dough is elastic, 7-10 minutes.
Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Allow to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until dough is doubled in size. (I was in a bit of a hurry as I made this and didn't let it rise for as long as it should have and they turned out great. I would still recommend letting it double but it is not super finicky dough)
In a small bowl, combine melted butter, parsley flakes, and minced garlic. Set aside.
Punch down the dough. Tear off small pieces of dough (roughly the size of the bowl of a medium spoon), coat in the butter mixture, and place in the bottom of a bundt pan. Repeat this process until you have one layer of dough balls. Sprinkle on 1/3 of the Parmesan cheese. Continue layering the dough balls and cheese until you have 3 layers. Cover the pan with a clean towel and allow to sit until dough has doubled in size, 20-30 minutes.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until bread is golden brown. Serve hot with a side of marinara or tomato sauce.

You can do your balls any size, as you can see mine are on the big side, like golf balls, remember they rise a lot!
My bread fell apart as soon as I tipped it upside down out of the bundt cake pan, but I was totally fine with that because it made for a darling bread basket instead a cake platter.

Try these, love these and let me know your thoughts!

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

So, i'm a little torn about posting this recipe. Was it really tasty, absolutely. Actually, in my opinion, it was better 2 days later as leftovers. The flavors had really combined and settled. HOWEVER, I think that I maybe burned my milk or the carrots had too much water in them or something because my texture was way grainy and I couldn't figure it out. The blogger i borrowed this recipe from used velveeta instead of Colby Jack but I don't actually count Velveeta as real food, therefore, I used Colby Jack. Could that have been the problem? Who knows. Like I said, the taste was amazing. The texture left something to be desired. What are your thoughts? 

Here is the original blog. She has some great ideas!

I borrowed her picture, isn't it pretty? I think I put in WAY too many carrots too because mine was almost orange, hers looks so yummy!

Good Luck, I definitely recommend it but hopefully your texture beats mine. I'll have to make this again and see if I can help it improve at all. 

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 lb fresh broccoli, chopped
  • 1 cup carrot, shredded and chopped
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 8 ounces grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 4 ounces grated Colby jack cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Hot Sauce (optional)
Sauté the onion and garlic in the butter over medium heat. Remove the onions or leave the onions in there if you prefer to skip a step, i don't think it makes a difference and add in the flour, stirring constantly. Add in the half and half, milk, and chicken stock. SLOWLY Bring to almost a boil.
Add the onions back in(if you took them out), along with the broccoli and carrots. Simmer on low heat for about 20 minutes.
Season the soup with the salt, pepper, nutmeg, and cardamom. Stir in the cheeses (and you can play around with the amounts; use however much or little you like) and let simmer for 10 minutes longer before serving.

Crockpot Teryaki Chicken

Mmm! this was so easy, so fast (besides cooking time but that hardly counts) and so yummy! This is definitely going on the repeat list!

From this blog originally:

12 boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 3 pounds)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup soy sauce
6 tablespoons cider vinegar
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
4 1/2 teaspoons cold water
Hot cooked long grain rice

Place chicken in a 4 qt. slow cooker.  In a large bowl, combine the sugar, soy sauce, cider vinegar, ginger, garlic and pepper.  Pour over chicken.  Cover and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours or until chicken is tender.  Remove chicken to a serving platter; keep warm.  Skim fat from cooking liquid.  Place liquid in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Combine cornstarch and water until smooth.  Gradually stir into liquid and stir until sauce is thickened. (this step took several minutes longer than i was expecting, if yours takes a while, be patient)
Serve with chicken and rice.

Note:  I halved the recipe and it still worked fine in my crock pot.  It definitely does not need the full 4 hours time but it was fall apart tender and moist so 4 hours was not a bad thing, just not necessary.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Coffee Cake Muffins

Funny story with these ones. As a good housewife does, i refilled the sugar canister when it got low. And yes, I was quite pleased with myself. Let's just say, sometimes it takes a while to "get around" to that task.
Well, another proud moment of the morning. It was my husband's first day of his new job and I wanted to make sure he started well so that the day went fabulously. So, I made him his favorite muffins with boiled eggs. MMM! No better way to send him off to his first day of work :)
Well, the muffins were done just at the right time so he could leave early and not have to hurry.
We sit down, say our prayer, bite into the morsels of deliciousness and...
Ewwww! I ran to the sink and spit it out as fast as I could.
Apparently, when salt and sugar are in large Tupperware in the pantry they look just the same. Labeling those was on the to-do list yesterday. Hmmm, should'a done that.
To put it short: we had 1/2 C of salt in our muffins this morning.

So, on his first day of his new job I sent my husband off after a breakfast of Boiled Eggs and Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Perfect :)

Now, I recognize that these have already been posted but they are delicious enough to be repeated.

So instead of reposting the entire recipe i'll send you to the original link.

Go and enjoy! But remember...check your salt and sugar. Don't mix them up, it is definitely NOT delicious if you do. But, it does make a funny story :)

(These pictures were the next morning's redemption.)

Lemon Poppyseed Pancakes

4:00PM: I think to myself, "What should we have for dinner? {the husband} will be home in one hour...hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm..." and yes, more often than not I stand in front of my menu thinking what else could I make.
BREAKFAST!!! mmmm! Sometimes breakfast for dinner is the answer to everything.
So, when i saw this recipe let me just say my arms tickled, my ears tingled and my feet twitched. (recognize the quote? any of you read Pinkalicious 800 times a day? I love that book and so does my little girl) 

 Well, here is your new favorite breakfast for dinner recipe. These were amazing and quick! 

There are a lot of lemons but trust me just like the girl who originally posted this, USE THEM ALL: they are so yummy and fresh! mmmm! I didn't have as many poppy seeds as I thought so I only used 1/2 the poppy seeds and it was still so delicious but next time i'll use the full amount. 

Mix the wet and dry, just until combined. Don't over-mix. It will be lumpy (even more lumpy than usual pancakes because of the lemon zest.)

Top with some delicious fruit and syrup. 

{This recipe was found here}

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1/3 cup poppy seeds
zest of 4 lemons
2 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted

butter, to serve (and for pan)

To make the pancakes combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt in a large bowl. In another bowl the buttermilk, eggs, butter, lemon zest and poppy seeds. Add the wet to the dry. Stir all the ingredients until they are just combined. Don't worry if the batter is a bit lumpy, you don't want to over mix.
Heat your skillet, pan, or griddle to medium-hot and brush it with a bit of butter. Test for the right temperature. If a drop of water dropped onto the pan starts to dance, you are in the ballpark. Pour about 1/3 of a cup of batter into the skillet. Wait until the pancake bottom is deep golden in color, then flip with a spatula and cook the other side until golden and cooked through. Repeat with the remaining batter.  

Recipe for fruit compote:
Place about 1 C frozen or fresh berries in small saucepan along with about 1/3 C sugar and approximately 3Tbsp. lemon juice. heat until there is enough juice to pour over pancakes. 

Pour compote, fruit and syrup or any other toppings you choose. These are wonderful and worth it!

(Check out what else has. Great ideas!)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

this week's menu

So, as I planned the next 2 weeks of dinner I got too excited to keep it to myself so I thought I would share my menu with you and maybe give some inspiration.

I promise to post as I go so that you can have the most delcious dinners too!
(*I'm only posting if they are fab! No drab on this blog!)

  • Broccoli cheddar Soup with garlic parmesan pull apart bread
  • Lemon Chicken 
  • Lemon Poppyseed Pancakes with fruit
  • Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken
  • Crock Pot Minestrone Soup
  • Mozzarella/Tomato Gnocchi Bake
  • Life-changing Mac and Cheese (i'll let you know if it lives up to the name)
  • Barbeque onion Burgers
  • Crock Pot Meatball Stew (with home-made meatballs)
  • Pork Chops Agrodolce
  • Smoked Chicken Pizza (We just bought a smoker!!!!!!!)
  • Smoked Sausages with flat bread (again, we just bought a smoker!!!!!)
  • Fish n' chips. I lived in Ireland for 18 months and fall always reminds me of it. This feels like the right time of year for fish n' chips. 
  • Black Bean Chili - I already know this is AMAZING! Jared made it up last winter and it has been a regular repeat at our house; Winter in bread bowls or just alone, summer on scones for Navajo Tacos. mmmm! Always delicious!
Hopefully you get some sort of inspiration. :)
I'll let you know how it goes. The pancakes are tonight. MMMM!!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Homemade noodles

These are easy peasy! Just plan ahead.

Homemade Noodles:

  • 1 beaten Egg
  • 2 Tablespoons Milk
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Flour (approximately)

Combine egg, milk, and salt. Add enough Flour to make a stiff dough. Roll out very thin on a floured surface. Let stand 20 minutes.
Roll up loosely and slice ¼” wide. Unroll and spread out to dry for at least 2 hours.
Drop into boiling soup or boiling, salted water and cook uncovered for about 10 minutes.
Notes: Makes about 3 cups cooked noodles. Can be stored in a container until needed. 
Delicious in chicken noodle soup!

Chicken Noodle Soup over Mashed Potatoes

Your life is about to change in ways you never could have imagined. 
You have been warned.

Imagine with me if you will. It is spring in Salt Lake City, Utah. The flowers are out, the sun isn't warm yet but it's warmish and things are starting to thaw out and live again. Now, enter me in my wedding dress. It was the perfect day, the man of my dreams was there (thank goodness because that could have been awkward and terrible), we both said yes, I looked awesome :), everything was just as it was supossed to be...enter the weather. IT WAS FREEZING!!!!!! annnnnnnnnnd, it was the windiest day i've ever seen! (Everyone's hair looks awesome in the pictures!)
Ok, so it was maybe not the windiest day ever, but exaggerate with me because every story is a little better if there is drama
So 3.5 years ago I married into the most amazing family and I have learned so much and tried so many new things since that freezing day in March. One of those new things is my mother-in-law's chicken noodle soup. 
Like I said at the beginning, this will change your life. period. 
We took this to my sister the night they brought their baby girl home from the hospital and they still talk about it, 3 yrs. later. Oh yeah, it's that good.

So, are you curious enough? ha ha i'll get on with it.

2 words of caution.
  1. Making your own noodles is EASY peasy if you plan ahead - don't be intimidated (i was my first time, i think I purposely didn't mention that I was going to make it to anyone the first time so that if it was a disaster, no one would ask how it went)
  2. Come HUNGRY because you won't want just a "taste."

 Now, The recipe. Drumroll please...........


  • 1 cooked Chicken
  • 1 ½ quarts Water & Broth in equal parts
  • 3 Chicken Bouillon cubes
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 2 small Onions, chopped
  • 1 cup diced Carrots
  • 1 cup diced Celery
  • Celery Leaves, chopped
  • 2 cups Noodles
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped Parsley
  • 1 can Cream of Chicken Soup

Put all ingredients except Cream of Chicken Soup and parsley in a pot and simmer until vegetables are done.Just before serving, add parsley and the can of soup. Stir until well mixed and serve.

You can use the salted water the chicken was cooked in as the broth.
This soup is delicious with homemade noodles and/or served over homemade mashed potatoes. (Do both. trust me.)

Variation:Add 1 cup diced potatoes to recipe if not serving over mashed potatoes.

Homemade Noodles:

  • 1 beaten Egg
  • 2 Tablespoons Milk
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Flour (approximately)

Combine egg, milk, and salt. Add enough Flour to make a stiff dough. Roll out very thin on a floured surface. Let stand 20 minutes.
Roll up loosely and slice ¼” wide. Unroll and spread out to dry for at least 2 hours.
Drop into boiling soup or boiling, salted water and cook uncovered for about 10 minutes.
Notes: Makes about 3 cups cooked noodles. Can be stored in a container until needed. 
Delicious in chicken noodle soup!

Fettucini Alfredo {Light!}

Sometimes I just need that rich heavy sauce that Alfredo is. Sometimes I just want to go out to Italian food and not worry that there are more calories in the appetizer than I should eat in a week, right? Tell me i'm not alone on this. 
Well ladies and gentlemen. Your day is here (well, my day is here I guess. I might be alone on this endeavor) This recipe is from Cooking Light and is a healthier version. And, it is without question, one of our favorites!!! hope you enjoy!
Now, splurge when you need the Italian food and really go crazy and have a breadstick with it! Don't worry, I will never tell.
1 T butter
2 garlic cloves, minced

1 T all-purpose flour

1 1/2 c 1% milk

1 1/4 C (5 oz.) grated fresh Parmeggiano-Reggiano cheese, divided

1 T 1/3 less-fat cream cheese

1/2 tsp. salt

4 C hot cooked fettuccini (8 oz. uncooked pasta)

2 tsp. chopped fresh leaf parsley

cracked black pepper


Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic, cook one minute stirring frequently. Stir in flour. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk. Cook 6 minutes or until mixture thickens, stirring constantly. Add 1 cup cheese, cream cheese and salt stirring with a whisk until cheeses melt. Toss sauce with hot pasta. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese and chopped parsley. Garnish with black pepper. serve immediately. Serves 4.

We always add some type of meat. Chicken is delicious in it and 1 chicken breast is usually plenty!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Broiled Tilapia Parmesan

If you are intimidated by fish -- this is your recipe! EASIEST FISH RECIPE EVER!

This was discovered on and it is extremely delicious!


1/4 cups Parmesan cheese  
2 tablespoons butter softened 
1 tablespoon and 1 1/2 teaspoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoons dried basil
1/8 teaspoons ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoons onion powder 
1/8 teaspoons celery salt
1 pounds tilapia fillets


Preheat your oven's broiler. Grease a broiling pan or line pan with aluminum foil.
In a small bowl, mix together the Parmesan cheese, butter, mayonnaise and lemon juice. Season with dried basil, pepper, onion powder and celery salt. Mix well and set aside.
Arrange fillets in a single layer on the prepared pan. Broil a few inches from the heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the filllets over and broil for a couple more minutes. Remove the fillets from the oven and cover them with the Parmesan cheese mixture on the top side. Broil for 2 more minutes or until the topping is browned and fish flakes easily with a fork. Be careful not to overcook the fish.

Baked Oatmeal

So for all those that have found and loved this recipe, you are holding out on the rest of us! My sister--in-law has been talking about baked oatmeal for awhile now and as it was raining this morning when we woke up I felt fall-ish and needed a breakfast to follow suit. What better, than the mysterious baked oatmeal i had heard so much about!

Did it live up to its expectations? You better beleive it! This stuff is YUMMY!
and super easy! It takes about 10 minutes to get everything together and into the baking dish (and that's at "i-just-woke-up" speed) and then it only cooks for 20 minutes. Perfect for a relaxed morning and today was the perfect day to try it; raining, a little darker than usual and fall. Ahh, welcome to this beautiful season where the leaves change colors and crunch under your feet, where pumpkins start emerging from the front of stores to peoples front porches (mine are coming out this weekend after our pumpkin painting extravaganza this weekend...stay posted i'll post some pictures) and where baked oatmeal and apples take over the menu.

Happy breakfasting!

Baked Oatmeal:


2 cups
uncooked quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup
packed brown sugar
1/3 cup
raisins (opt.)
1 tablespoon
chopped walnuts, plus more if you so desire -- i put in about 3 T and loved it.
1 teaspoon
baking powder
1 1/2 cups
fat-free milk
1/2 cup
applesauce (you can substitute cooking oil for this but i think it would be best with applesauce, sticking with the season and all)
2 tablespoons
butter, melted
large egg, beaten (or 2 medium eggs)
Cooking spray


Preheat oven to 375°.

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl. Combine the milk, applesauce, butter, and egg. Add milk mixture to oat mixture; stir well. Pour oat mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 20 minutes. Serve warm.